Colour consultations sometimes include recommendations for new finishes (flooring, cabinetry, etc) for a room, as well as wall colour. However, paint is the fastest and most economical way to transform a space, and it is what I help clients choose most often. One of my online clients has graciously agreed to allow me to show you before and after photos of her space, so we can look at how the colour changes have impacted her beautiful home.

One of the things clients frequently dislike in their homes is the abundance of oak/pine generally found in older homes. This client is very chic, with a taste for the contrast of black and white, and  she prefers a clean, contemporary aesthetic over the rustic feel the existing brick and oak panelling created. She decided to paint out her panelling throughout white, and added a cool, blue-based grey to the upper family room walls.

These were good choices, but the problems arose when the white paint she chose appeared too yellow in her family room, and too grey in her foyer. She tried again, but ended up with another disappointing white. White can be just as difficult, if not more difficult, than a saturated colour to get right. Tired of pairing, and dreading buying more paint that didn't work, she contacted me for a consultation.

The wood floors in this space are yellow/orange-toned, and so a neutral white containing slightly more cool tones than warm was needed for balance. I suggested Moonlight White from Benjamin Moore on the walls, and using the same colour on the panelling, simply upping the sheen level by one step for durability and a more polished finish. Slipcovers were planned for the two sofas, and this gave her a perfectly neutral envelope to which she could add whatever colour she prefers down the road. The client and her husband worked tirelessly to remove that brick fireplace surround, and replaced it with perfectly scaled built-ins. I suggested adding some black to this area, to ground it, and balance a chalkboard wall she wanted to add in the kitchen area opposite. I also recommended painting out her railing between the spaces black to elevate it a little.

What a transformation, right? It helps to have a client with such fabulous style! The photo above the fireplace was taken by a friend, and it features the clients two sons. She was concerned about the green tones looking out of place, so I recommended adding some greenery - it's a rare living room that does not benefit from a plant, as green has a wonderful rejuvenating influence on us.

Layering in accessories warms up the white, and prevents the black from looking too stark. This is all the colour that this clients wants. Aren't those curtains perfect? They contain the wood floor and carpet tones, tying the entire palette together.

This is the opposite side of the space, with the chalkboard wall. The client has planned to paint out her cabinetry. She was undecided between black lowers and white uppers or all-white cabinets.  we decided that black lowers with the chalkboard wall would be too dark, and she will be going white. Hopefully she will allow me to post a few pictures of the transformation over here, as well!

The best part about any consultation is talking to the client later, after the changes are completed, and hearing the pure joy in their voices as they describe how happy they are to come home each day. If you are ready to make some changes in your space, would like to determine the design direction you are going in and receive a colour plan, contact me and we can get started creating a home you love.

Anne-Marie Ezeard
Principal Designer, 10 Rooms Design

For more information about the on-line colour consultation process, click here.

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